HALCYON LO132

Official No:  99695   Port Number and Year: Grimsby, 1893 (GY504)

                                                                           London, 1896 (LO132)

                                                                           Aberdeen, c.1914 (A514)

                                                                           Yarmouth, c.1919 (YH113)

Description: Steel side trawler; steam screw, coal burning. Yawl rigged.

Crew:  

Built: 1893,  by Mackie & Thomson, Govan  (Yard no. 66)

Tonnage: 141 grt  54 net.

Length / breadth / depth (feet): 98 / 20.5 / 10.7

Engine: T 3-Cyl. 35 rhp.; by Muir & Huston, Hull

Owners:

 

As GY504

Jul 1893: Great Grimsby Ice Co., Grimsby.

 

As LO132

Mar 1896: Chas. T. Pannell, Stamford Hill, London

 

1908: Brand & Co., Milford

 

1913: Charles E. B. L. Curzon, Docks, Milford.

 

As A514

c.1914: Standard Steam Fishing Co., Aberdeen.

Manager: H. A. Holmes.

 

As YH113

By 1920: J. T. C. Salmon, Gt. Yarmouth

 

Nothing further known. Not in Olsen's 1934 as HALCYON.

 

Landed at Milford: 6 Jan 1908 - 5 Aug 1915

Skippers:

Notes: Sister ship to CYGNET LO131 and TEAL LO135 ("The little London boats")

12 Dec 1914: Fitted out for Admiralty service at Pembroke Dock.

1917-19: As HALCYON II, Fishery Trawler.

 Accidents and Incidents

From an unknown local newspaper of c. 11th February 1908: 

   

   A very strong gale has been raging for several days past, and terrible weather has been experienced at sea.  Just about high water on Saturday night, the steam trawler "Halcyon" of Yarmouth, (Brand & Co.), now trading out of Milford, returned to Milford Harbour, having in tow the schooner "Dart", of Wexford.  The trawler took her charge up as far as Pill Point, as she was leaking badly, to anchorage near the shore.

    The "Dart" left Swansea with a cargo of culm for Youghal, Ireland, on the 4th inst., and encountered tempestuous weather.  Captain Michael Flynn and crew related a thrilling experience.  They were driven back on their course, and when off the Smalls, the weather increased with such force that the mainsail was carried away, the topsail sheet parted and was also lost, the forestay sail and standing jib was blown to ribbons.  They endeavoured to make for Hook Tower, but the wind came around from the westward with increasing force, and carried away the foresail.  The gaff topsail was hoisted for the purpose of laying to, but the vessel drifted at the rate of 11  miles an hour. 

    The decks were awash, and the crew were in parlous plight, being at the mercy of the waves, when the "Halcyon", observing the distressed ship, bore down on her and took her in tow.

    Although brought into harbour, the crew's troubles were not ended, and all night they had to keep at the pumps.  On Sunday evening, she dragged her anchor and came broadside on to the shore, on the Noyes side of Castle Pill entrance.

    It will be some time before she can be got off, if indeed she can be floated at all.  All the crew are saved.

 

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From a local newspaper, possibly the West Wales Guardian of Friday 8th March 1912:  

 

     News reached us yesterday that the Glasgow steamer Osmunli, of 2,240 tons, loaded with coal and bricks, had been towed into Swansea by three Milford trawlers. the Halcyon (Belonging to Messrs. Brand and Co.); the  Kirkland (Mr. Birt and D. J. Davies, part owner and skipper); and the Cameo (Mr. Johnson's).  They had found the steamer on her beam ends and abandoned, and the crew, it is believed, had put into Padstow.    No details are as yet known.

 

From the Haverfordwest & Milford Haven Telegraph of Wednesday 13th March 1912:

 

    The Glasgow steamer "Osmanli", 4,000 tons registered*, was towed into Swansea on Thursday by the steam trawlers "Cameo", "Kirkland" and "Halcyon", having picked up the derelict off Lundy Island on Tuesday.  Before the trawlers took her in tow the Lowestoft fishing smack "V & A" had sighted her in a heavy gale flying signals of distress, and put two men aboard of her, and another Lowestoft trawler, the "Bentar" [ sic ], took off her crew of 25, subsequently landing them at Padstow.

    The "Osmanli" was loaded with steam coal, and the ship and cargo are assumed to be worth about 35,000.  The vessel had a big list when brought into the King's Dock, Swansea. 

    The trawlermen expect a big reward by way of salvage. "The Osmanli was caught by a gale 20 miles off Trevose Head," said the mate of the Milford steam trawler "Cameo", which was at the bow of the steamer that was being towed in.  "I do not blame them, the crew, for leaving her, for she was in a very bad way, terrible seas making her quite helpless.  We, together with the Kirkland and the Halcyon, all three trawlers belonging to Milford, then got hold of her, and with the smack V & A in attendance, made for Swansea.  We had a fearful time.  We had not a bite or sup for 48 hours, and every hour we found that the boat would break away.  The weather was something awful, and heaven only knows how we got her in eventually.  The Master of the "Osmanli", Captain McDonald, was loath to leave his ship, but the boat was rapidly heeling over, and it was touch and go getting her to port, I tell you."

    The "Halcyon" appears to have been the first of the steam trawlers to get hold of the prize, then the "Kirkland" (Captain D. J. Davies), but so hazardous was the task that it was extremely fortunate that the "Cameo" (Captain George Cobley) came along at just the right moment.

    The Mate, whose story is told above, is Walter Dewsbury, Milford Haven.  The trawlers have now left Swansea and put to sea, and the crew of these vessels will anxiously await the prize award.

 

[  * Actually 2283 g.r.t

In May 1912, Mr. Justice Bargreave Deane found that the value of the OSMANLI and her cargo was 7,845, and he awarded a total sum of 3,190, divided as follows:

PANTIRE (for saving 14 lives) 140;  E.M.W. (which saved 10 lives) 100; "G AND E" (whose mate and 2 hands took charge of the OSMANLI) 300; HALCYON, KIRKLAND and CAMEO (principal salvors) 800 each, apportioning 500 to each of the owners, 50 to each of the masters, and 250 to each of the crews; a pilot and 3 others received 100, the BEAUFORT 100 and the CONQUEROR 50.

    800 is worth 52,748 today (measured by RPI) or 277,685 (by average earnings).  By the latter measurement, each of the trawler skippers would have received the equivalent of 17,355 today. ]

 

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From the Haverfordwest and Milford Haven Telegraph of  Wednesday 17th December 1913:

 

    Mr. Brand and Co. have disposed of their smaller vessels, viz. Halcyon, Teal, Osprey and Cygnet, to Mr Curzon, the owner of the steam trawler Quebec, and they will remain in the port.  These vessels, known as the little London boats, have done remarkably well ever since they came to the port.

 

 

   

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